Elementary School

Judaic Studies Program

Our Yeshiva, an affiliate of the Chofetz Chaim Torah Network, recognizes that its responsibility is not merely to impart knowledge, but to instill a joy and passion for learning. In our skill-based Limudei Kodesh curriculum, you will not find a focus on rote memorization. Rather, we offer an emphasis on becoming creative thinkers and developing critical thinking skills. As we encourage our students to become independent learners, we instill in them a meaningful life-long enthusiasm and love for learning Torah. Our program is built on the devotion and expertise of our Rebbeim and Moros, each of whom has spent many personal years studying Torah and Middos, so that the lessons and values they impart are infused with heartfelt depth and clarity.


Guiding Curriculum Principles

Our Torah Studies curriculum contains four broad objectives:

Curricular Goals:
Our students learn and master large portions of Chumash, becoming familiar with the style and format of the pesukim, as well as reading, decoding, and translating. Content and comprehension are covered with the commentaries and Midrashic interpretations. The learning and reading of Rashi, Mishnayos, and ultimately Gemara, are learned and covered in depth as the grades progress. Students learn many sections of daily Halacha including the laws of Tefilla, Shabbos, and Berachos. Yamim Tovim are covered in depth, and the words and meaning of Tefillos and Berachos are learned and mastered. Dikduk and Ivrit are integrated into class programs. Navi is learned in the older grades as well. Special class and school programs focus on general Yedios and knowledge.

Learning and Analytical Skills:
Our objective is far more than the acquisition of Torah information and knowledge. Our goal is to help our students become life-long learners by giving them the skills to learn on their own. A love and desire for learning, coupled with the skills and vocabulary necessary to open up a Chumash, Gemara, or any sefer on their own, empower our children to discover for themselves the vastness, depth and beauty of Torah learning. Understanding and mastery are stressed over memorization. In Chumash, dikduk skills and recognizing shorashim are stressed; in Rashi and Gemara, analytic skills are developed to decipher questions, answers, and proofs. Training in understanding and recognizing implied questions and reasoning allows our students to become independent learners in their quest for greatness in Torah learning.

Middos and Character Building:
A primary focus is placed on building character and developing Derech Eretz. Throughout all grades, our exemplary staff model for the children how to speak and interact with dignity and sensitivity. Concepts and character traits such as respect, kindness, honesty, and generosity are highlighted in class topics and classroom interactions. Classroom lessons and schoolwide programs focus on developing Menchlichkeit – acting with dignity with one’s elders, peers, and oneself. Our students are inculcated with the understanding that all human greatness must begin with the foundation of being a refined human being.

Torah Outlook and Values:
Above all, we endeavor to share the relevance and beauty of living a Torah way of life. The texts are the springboard from which we lead our children into the world of Torah values, Torah attitudes, and Torah living. Our Rebbeim and Moros share the depth of their own commitment and dedication to Torah, and show how the Torah’s timeless lessons can be applied to the students’ lives and to the challenges of the 21st Century.

General Studies Program

Torah Academy of Boca Raton offers an education of excellence in General Studies. Accredited by AdvancEd, Torah Academy’s intensive curriculum meets and exceeds state requirements for
elementary school certification. Our students begin exploring the various disciplines that constitute the foundation of the general studies curriculum that will prepare them academically to meet the challenges of their continuing education.

Guiding Curriculum Principles

The General Studies Education at Torah Academy provides a great deal more than academic information and skills. At each grade level, the teachers incorporate the year’s curriculum with
activities that allow the children to think, to use their own skills, to accomplish tasks that are reasonable for their developmental level, and to take pride in their work. Directed by our educational philosophy, our teachers combine the teaching of skills with the simultaneous nurturing of the proper development of the child. Thus, we offer an age-appropriate curriculum without creating undue stress and competition at a time when children should love to learn!

Our reading/writing program effectively reflects our philosophy. A phonics/literature-based reader is used in Grades 1-4, providing a sampling of fine stories, poems, and essays, and giving the children practice in the fundamental phonics/language arts skills that help create a proficient reader/writer. Exercises follow the stories that provide practice in phonics rules and their application, grammar, spelling, and syntax. Grades 1 and 2 also work with a supplemental phonics program that helps ensure mastery of the skills necessary for successful reading. In addition to this phonics program, each class, beginning with Grade 2, reads a minimum of four novels in school, during which time opinions, predictions, interpretations and reactions are a main focus of classroom learning. Each child is tasked with responding to questions about the segment of literature, in a way that taps not only writing skills, but emphasizes the value of a personal, substantiated opinion, and of critical thinking. In this way, we build self-esteem as well as skills.

Our math program develops skills and understanding with an emphasis on critical thinking, using our math series that focuses on higher-level problem solving as well as math basics. Throughout first \and second grades, teachers utilize concrete objects, coins, unifix cubes, cuisinaire rods, and more in order to enable the children to ultimately work with math concepts. Everyday experiences are replete with numerical and mathematical abstractions and we try to emphasize the relationship between our lives and the use of math. In the upper grades, we infuse the curriculum with logic and word problems, brain teasers, and puzzles in order to fine-tune critical thinking skills. Older students learn how to set up equations and begin to think algebraically to solve for unknowns. Our science and social studies programs expand beyond the scope of the textbooks with hands-on experiences, technology integration, and interactive discussion. In conjunction with the Judaics Department, we try to guide the children toward a sense of pride for their community, their world and in themselves.

To address the learning needs of individual students, Torah Academy has an on-staff learning specialist who helps determine the nature of any academic support warranted. Teachers work with the principal and parents to meet these needs; referrals for outside educational and emotional/behavioral support services are made by the principal following formal staff meetings with
teachers and parents.


Elementary Staff

  • Rabbi Rafi Draiman

  • Mrs. Jacy Orlinsky
    Elementary General Studies Principal

  • Rabbi Mordechai Yachnes
    1st Grade Rebbi

  • Rabbi Yaakov Akerman
    2nd Grade Rebbi

  • Rabbi Aryeh Estersohn
    3rd Grade Rebbi

  • Rabbi Amir Guttman
    4th/5th Grade Rebbi

  • Rabbi Ephraim Hochberg
    5th Grade Rebbi

  • Mrs. Melinda Brown
    1st Grade Boys GS Teacher

  • Mrs. Elana Ellman
    2nd Grade Boys Interim GS Teacher

  • Mrs. Shoshana Estersohn
    4th Grade Boys GS Teacher

Assistant Teachers
  • Mr. Yosef Ehrenpreis
  • Mr. Daniel Rose
  • Ms. Shaina Agami
  • Mrs. Lisa Baron
  • Ms. Perel Englander
  • Mrs. Rivka Goldstein
  • Ms. Esther Kroub
  • Mrs. Charon Mendelson
  • Ms. Tova Petlak
  • Mrs. Madalyn Rabinowitz
  • Ms. Sara Seltzer
  • Ms. Jackie Shafirovich
  • Mrs. Margo Spiegler
  • Ms. Shannah Warshawsky
  • Ms. Zahara Wealcatch
  • Mrs. Raya Zigun

To email a member of our teaching staff, please use the first initial of the first name and complete last name followed by torahacademybr.org (i.e. jdoe@torahacademybr.org).